Folding – Unfolding

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unfolding in Architecture

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 Why architect like folds or what usually called origami architecture? the answer:  because its beautiful in its appearance, with all the light/dark effect it make using shadows, additionally; it economically cover the space, it give them the flexibility to design dozens of options and alternatives using the same surface, but when it come to construction, its one of the most complex processes ever, many units to cut and prepare, sharp angles, and when it comes to curved surfaces, the real shape change when it come to unfold or unroll it.

Folding vs Unfolding

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Folding is a process of making surface taking smaller space in the void, by breaking it into smaller surfaces connected, but not planar; with angle in between.  Unfolding is the name of process which usually concern with realizing the real shape of folded surface or curved surface, or some times  its an unrolling process. these processes are defined according to the type of surface, either develop-able surfaces, which are easy to unroll, or the bigger group of ruled surfaces, which need more work and processes, including striping and meshing in some other cases. good example of folding are seen clearly in the industry of automotive, where car surfaces are folded into curved units.

importance of Understanding unfolding 

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In construction, it’s very important to  understand the surfaces unfolding process, for example, some projects have a large area of fabric surfaces, these surfaces are constructed using cutting techniques, either laser or water jet, to be able to precisely cut the exact shape of the fabric, we need to unfold its geometry in the digital model. another example, in some projects with double curved surfaces, we need to apply some realization processes using advanced algorithms, to extract develop-able surfaces out of the ruled one, unfold them, then finally code the edges and connection points, which ease the process of connecting later.

 

References

http://www.architizer.com/blog/folding-architecture-top-10-origami-inspired-buildings/

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